Originally a cattle market outside of the city fortifications, Alexanderplatz (affectionately known simply as “Alex” by locals) received its name in commemoration of a visit of Russian Emperor Alexander I (1805). This public square eventually became increasingly important after the Stadtbohn station (a large railroad transportation hub) and a nearby market center were constructed in the late 19th century.
Alexanderplatz’s heydays as the heart of Berlin’s nightlife were during the 1920’s. In 1960, the East German government redeveloped it into a pedestrian zone. Today, it is surrounded by the Berlin Television Tower (which we blogged about previously), the Press Club, the 180 store Alexa shopping mall, and the historic Red City Hall ( the seat of Berlin’s city government). Alexanderplatz is also one of Berlin’s largest and most important transportation hub ( with railway and tram stations located here). Fans of the Jason Bourne films will recognize the square being featured in the “Bourne Supremacy.”
Within the center of this public square is the famous World Time Clock ( also known as the Urania World Clock) - a turret-style clock, built in 1969, displaying time in 148 major cities of the world.